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MODI AT 365 DAYS

 
#Modi365 top hashtag through the day. Personal DM on twitter timelines of people who follow the PM. How is Indian politics changing in times of ad blitzkriegs? 

As I woke up today I was greeted by a personal message on my twitter timeline. It was from none other than the PM himself. His message read as follows

 

“ Dear Bhupendra, the past 12 months have been historic and memorable in India’s development journey. Relive it in 12 photos, videos, speeches , tweets, posts and quotes “

 

As I took my morning cup of tea and looked at the papers, the story was the same there too. Full page ads of Prime Minister Modi being complimented for completing one year in power. Giving him a tough competition, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa marking her four years in power by showcasing the number of freebies she has distributed. From mixies to laptops and even free goat.

 

During the day when I switched on tv for catching up on some afternoon news, it was the same there as well.  All headlines were only about the BJP completing one year in power.

 

This kind of blitzkrieg has been unparalleled in Indian politics. Even when Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the PM, bjp would use media as a tool to sell him to the masses. But the degree was much mellowed. Perhaps one could argue that the number of tools available were also lesser. You didn’t have twitter or facebook in those days. So the likes of the then BJP powerhouse Pramod Mahajan would indulge in personal calls in their attempts to connect with the masses.

 

The attempt then, as is now, was to create a personal touch. To create that personal touch you need a product that is saleable enough. Mr Modi scores high on that front without any doubt. But see how very cleverly, he has resisted from being a mere critique of what was wrong earlier with the system. He is now positioning himself as the leader who has already heralded the beginning of ache din. That’s why the hashtag #Saalekshuruatanek.

 

His style of politics will always be high on hyperbole and rhetoric. There is no doubting the fact that there is an all round change in perception about India. Mr Modi has clearly given the impression that he is not interested in status quo. But at this point of time, we can only judge him by his intent.

 

While we look at #Modi365, also important to look at #Opposition365. Barring the second half of budget session of parliament, there is little the opposition has to cheer. It is yet to be in a position where it can really call the shots. All players with whom there could have been greater unity are increasingly creating their own comfort zones with the PM. Mamataa Banerjee is realizing that she stands to gain more if she was not to antagonize the PM. Mayawati will forever remain hostage to the slew of corruption cases against her. Jayalalithaa has only just managed to win back her CM chair. The Janta Parivaar experiment of Lalu and Nitish coming together is in danger of exploding even before it could get a life of its own.

So the rankings given by the newspapers today, “ distinction to PM Modi “, at the end of the day could well be a judgment on what he has declared so far. Next 365 days will be judged on how he implements what he has promised.  


Tags: BJP, Congress, Narendra Modi